The following article contains discussion of sexual misconduct and suicide that some readers may find upsetting.
Netflix documentary Audrie and Daisy participant Daisy Coleman has died at the age of 23.
Coleman – who was one of the subjects of the 2016 documentary that looked at three sexual assault cases of teenage girls in the US – died by suicide, her mum Melinda Moeller Coleman wrote on Facebook.
"She was my best friend and amazing daughter," Melinda wrote in a post, saying that her daughter had been found after she called police to conduct a welfare check. "I wish I could have taken the pain from her! She never recovered from what those boys did to her and it's just not fair. My baby girl is gone."
Coleman alleged that in 2012 at the age of 14 she was raped at a party in Missouri by a 17-year-old boy. He was arrested and charged with sexual assault but his charge was later dropped to endangerment of a minor.
He was sentenced to four months in jail but ended up instead serving two years' probation and paying $1,800 in restitution.
As seen in the documentary after Coleman's allegation was made public, she was bullied at school and her family were targeted.
Audrie and Daisy also told the story of 15-year-old Audrie Pott, who was sexually assaulted in 2012 and died by suicide shortly afterwards.
As press are beginning to reach out, we wanted to release a statement so that we can all remember her for the legacy of her work: "Through our shock and sadness, we are releasing a statement about our loss of Daisy.
— SafeBAE (@safe_bae) August 5, 2020
Coleman went on to create a sexual assault prevention organisation called SafeBAE, or Safe Before Anyone Else, in 2017.
The organisation has released a statement on Twitter, saying: "Through our shock and sadness, we are releasing a statement about our loss of Daisy.
"We are shattered and shocked by her passing from suicide. She had been in EMDR therapy for 2 years, working on her triggers and healing from the many traumas in her life. She had many coping demons and had been facing and overcoming them all, but as many of you know, healing is not a straight path or any easy one.
"She fought longer and harder than we will ever know. But we want to be mindful of all the young survivors who looked up to her. Please know that above ALL ELSE, she did this work for you.
"She loved talking to young people about changing the culture and taking care of one another. Much of her healing came from each of you. She was so proud of the work we've done and loved seeing so many fierce young activists push for change in their schools and among their friends."
We would encourage anyone who identifies with the topics raised in this article to reach out. Organisations who can offer support include Samaritans on 116 123 (www.samaritans.org) or Mind on 0300 123 3393 (www.mind.org.uk). Readers in the US are encouraged to visit mentalhealth.gov or the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Rape Crisis England and Wales works towards the elimination of all forms of sexual violence and sexual misconduct. If you’ve been affected by the issues raised in this story, you can access more information on their website or by calling the National Rape Crisis Helpline on 0808 802 9999. Rape Crisis Scotland’s helpline number is 08088 01 03 02.
Readers in the US are encouraged to contact RAINN, or the National Sexual Assault Hotline on 800-656-4673.
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